Awesome movies at Archive.org

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Archive.org’s Moving Image Archive

You already know Archive.org as the home of the Wayback Machine and as a great place to find stuff like free audio by everyone from Gracie Allen to Godspeed You! Black Emperor.

I think the gem of the site for enthusiasts of pop culture awesomeness is the Moving Images section, which contains thousands of films, cartoons — you name it. Most are available for download at high resolution, so you can throw them on your iPod or burn ‘em to DVD and watch on that big-ass TV of yours.

Lately, one of my favorite areas is The Prelinger Archives, which houses some of Rick Prelinger’s astounding collection of ephemeral films — promotional videos, educational reels, and seemingly endless ads and pitches, mostly from America’s less ironic past. In the ephemeral section, you’ll find dancing ladies making an omelette, a soldier who doesn’t want to take a bath, and a paean to the patriotic power of electricity. And, oh boy: cautionary nuclear tales? Not a problem.

But, seriously, do not miss out on the really good stuff that abounds in the film and animation sections: classic cartoons from the Fleischer Brothers (Betty Boop shown above), creepy young Peter Lorre in Fritz Lang’s M, the classic Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, and the amazing 1955 “Rhythm and Blues Revue” (with Sarah Vaughan, Cab Calloway, Nat Cole, Nipsey Russell, and more).

Great way to kill a Sunday afternoon.

Merlin (for the vacationing Jesse)

Comments

YES! The Prelinger Collection is great. I've been doing a weekly re-mix of selected Prelinger films at http://www.nexttoheaven.net for nearly a year. Come by and check them out.CheersRob Parrish